Blythe Russo

  • Children's Book Illustrator (represented by Molly O'Neill of Waxman Leavell Literary Agency)
  • Soft Puppet Design and Fabrication

Being a poster child for introverts everywhere, I spent a lot of my childhood alone (on purpose, no pity parties please) - usually in the company of stories. I would draw characters while pondering their personality traits and backstories; I would narrate the adventures of my favorite stuffed animals; or, I would stay up late with one of those cheap book lights, trying to finish a chapter of the Roald Dahl book I was reading at the time.

I didn't realize I was already in love with storytelling.

My artistic inclinations grew as I did and I was very lucky to have a supportive family who encouraged my to do whatever made me happy (even if they'd rather I be an engineer). I decided to go to a liberal arts university in case art ended up not being the path for me - and then I went on to earn my M.F.A. in Illustration, because of course it was.

While attempting to write this bio, I realized that not much has really changed since I was a kid. Yes, I am now an older human who is more self-aware and has adult responsibilities, but I still prefer to spend the majority of my time indoors, drawing or reading children's books.

And that's when I figured out what I wanted for myself and my career. I decided to combine my two forever favorite things - drawing and reading -

 - and VOILÁ, children's illustration.

Since I really don't like writing about myself, this is obviously the condensed version. The path up still now has not been without lots of soul-searching and stumbling-a-plenty. However, now I embrace the stumbling. I know now making mistakes and utter failure are how I learn best.

I'm just winging it, the same as everyone else.